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Russo-Ukraine War: Live News and Latest Updates

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Russo-Ukraine War: Live News and Latest Updates

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March 15, 2022, 11:20 PM ET

Credit…Brendan Hoffman for The New York Times

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky is scheduled to deliver a virtual address to Congress just hours after President Biden plans to announce an additional $800 million in security aid to Ukraine on Wednesday, according to White House officials.

Biden announced new military aid in the late morning, shortly after Mr Zelensky gave a list of military equipment and other aid needed to deter a Russian offensive, and in particular to hold the capital, Kyiv. Will give details. , High on the list are antiaircraft batteries, which would make them capable of handling — and allowing Russian cargo planes and fighter jets — to get around the troubled city.

In addition to asking for weapons and warplanes, Mr. Zelensky has urged NATO to implement a no-fly zone, a move that has been rejected by the Allies, as it would put them in direct combat with Russian military forces. . To enforce a no-fly zone, US forces would have to take out Russian air defenses – inside Russia – and Mr Biden has dismissed the move as unnecessary. Russia has warned that it will consider the no-fly zone an act of war.

The administration last week announced $200 million in security aid to Ukraine. In February, the Biden administration approved a $350 million arms package for Ukraine. In total, the Biden administration has authorized $1.2 billion in weapons for Ukraine over the past year, officials said.

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Those weapons include at least 600 Stinger anti-aircraft missiles and about 2,600 Javelin antitank missiles, according to a senior White House official. But Ukraine needs more sophisticated antimissile systems.

So far, the Americans have provided Ukraine with five Mi-17 helicopters, three patrol boats and 70 other vehicles of various types.

The official said aid from the United States also included small arms: 200 grenade launchers, 200 shotguns, 200 machine guns and about 40 million rounds of ammunition. The official said the US has also sent one million grenades, mortars and artillery rounds, as well as body armor, helmets, tactical gear and military medical equipment.

The official said the weapons come from existing US military stockpiles in Europe and are flown to neighboring countries such as Poland and Romania, where they are shipped to western Ukraine.

The Biden administration has also asked Congress for $4.25 billion in new funding for economic and humanitarian aid for Ukrainians.

In addition to weapons, Mr. Zelensky has asked Europe and the United States to provide Ukraine with Polish MiG-29 fighter jets. Poland has refused to send its older, Russian-made fighter jets directly to Ukraine, but has instead offered to hand them over to the United States, delivering them to an American base in Germany for eventual transfer to Ukraine. .

The Biden administration rejected that plan because of the risk of pulling NATO directly into the war. Instead, the Biden administration provided Ukraine with anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons.

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